Barr vs. Trump: Both Have Sound Cases In Stone Standoff

BECAUSE the seven-to-nine year sentence recommended for veteran political fixer Roger Stone was absurdly excessive, no-nonsense Attorney-General Bill Barr reportedly had it on his lengthy to-do list for review. Donald Trump should therefore have kept schtum on the case. Pursuant to his celebrated (or lamented) wont, however, the President couldn’t resist attacking those responsible on Twitter. This kind of intervention does indeed make Barr’s job difficult. “Impossible” was the word Barr used, a rare show of exasperation with his headstrong boss. The intervention has gifted Democrats another fake scandal to talk about just as they were reeling from train-crash impeachment and SOTU stunts. Given that Trump ‘scandals’ are endless and crazy, it’s unlikely new ones register in voters’ minds. Democrats promoting them are now little read whining hoods. That can change. Yes, the public loses interest in the no-show big bad wolf. But politics is not a fairy tale (not quite). Lie hard enough and you can eventually schlep those conspiracy theories back to the promising upslope of the bell-curved law of diminishing returns. Politics aside, the President’s concerns were just.

Concocted by Democrat-aligned prosecutors – embittered by the failure of principal Bob Mueller’s nutty Russia collusion investigation – the proposed stretch for Stone was more than wrongheaded overkill. An utterly corrupt proxy punishment of the man they really wanted to frame – Donald Trump – it was their way of unnerving the President’s supporters by inflicting pain on one of their more defiant number. The story began with a pre-dawn raid by 29 FBI agents on Stone’s Fort Lauderdale home in January 2019. The heavily armed operation occurred at the height of the Russia Hoax and its timing was leaked to far-left CNN beforehand. Nothing more clearly illustrates how decades of police power had corrupted the moral bearings of Mueller. Awarded the Bronze Star in Vietnam, he sent half a platoon to arrest a 66 year-old in his pyjamas and made sure network television was there to film it. Asked about the CNN set-up during groggy testimony at Congressional hearings in July, he refused to tell the truth about it despite being sworn. Stone goes to jail, Mueller to pipe and slippers.

Two other things are important to remember in relation to the Stone affair. First, Bill Barr does indeed work for the President who is entitled and constitutionally empowered to give him lawful directions. Certainly he can be held accountable politically if those directions prove to be unwise but the Attorney-General in the US system of government is not some kind of unaccountable cop-caudillo. He answers to the man and the man was hired by the American people. Second, more than any president in history, Donald Trump has been the victim of highly illegal, politically motivated misbehaviour by officials and Democrat holdovers in the Justice Department and the FBI. While he seems to have more trust in Barr than any other member of his cabinet or administration, he is understandably suspicious of the many and varied ways cases against conservatives are pursued while those against Deep State darlings are engineered to fail. The decision not to prosecute former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe for dissembling to investigators about leaking to the media is an example of the latter. In this context, a Tweeting President on overwatch is not necessarily a bad thing. After all, McCabe – who was targeted remorselessly by Trump – was indeed guilty of dishonesty, as the Horowitz Report found. If the President takes over too often, however, his A-G will be sidelined. He’ll end up losing a good man.

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37 Responses to Barr vs. Trump: Both Have Sound Cases In Stone Standoff

  1. jupes

    Where is John H. Durham?

    Get a move on mate.

  2. Of course no other president has ever suggested a course of action to the DoJ. Just like no other president or deputy has ever withheld foreign aid until demands have been met.

  3. Richard Stacpoole

    I see little evidence that Barr is doing anything other than protecting the filth in the FBI and Justice. Barr is a Bushian and “respects” the establishment. Based on past experience every dirty cop and corrupt official with a (D) after their name will get off. I still don’t get why Rosenstein is still at the FBI.
    Good to see Trump starting to get rid of the corrupocrats in the NSC, now maybe he will get loyalists into the cabinet and the critical mid range bureaucracy where things actually get done.

  4. FelixKruell

    Given that Trump ‘scandals’ are endless and crazy, it’s unlikely new ones register in voters’ minds.

    True. But they’re real scandals, not ‘scandals’. Having your associates found guilty of obstruction of justice, witness tampering and making false statements isn’t something that happens to every president. Yet it seems to happen every other week to Trump.

    That said, the sentence in this case seems excessive. Interesting that Trumps way of addressing this is to lean on his cronies. Not trust the institutions and processes setup for this. Which is another reason he is far from a conservative.

  5. mh

    Not trust the institutions and processes setup for this. Which is another reason he is far from a conservative.

    He’s definitely not a conservative like John ‘Tremble’ Howard.

  6. mem

    What Trump has done is throw the leftist media yet another bone and talking point. They will now spend their time revving up this issue (which is not an issue for voters) and the Dems will dutifully call for another impeachment (which has run its course as a viable political strategy). DJT can now get on and do his stuff for Americans, whilst the Democrats continue to chase their own tails.

  7. What Trump has done is throw the leftist media yet another bone and talking point.

    That’s probably quite true, being the master troll that he is, he’s once again set the Democrats on a wild goose chase. I’ve said a number of times that the Left are bordering on the insane, if not insane already, as they keep doing the same thing over and over again, hoping for a different result.

  8. Tim Neilson

    Not trust the institutions and processes setup for this.

    Why the flying duck should he?

    When armed squads are sent to arrest someone like Stone (with the local equivalent of Pravda in attendance), while people like Eric Holder have never even faced charges, the “institutions and processes” can be seen to have been deeply corrupted.

    Trusting the swamp wouldn’t be “conservative”, it would just be batshit crazy.

  9. Rob MW

    The decision not to prosecute former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe for dissembling to investigators about leaking to the media is an example of the latter.

    It’s interesting that the DoJ dropped pursuing McCabe on the leaking of classified info and lying to FBI prosecutors which McCabe is obviously delighted about. However, there are serious matters that Durham is investigating like the predicate and possible conspiracy of the FBI’s operation ‘Crossfire Hurricane’, well document and reported massive abuses of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and the abuse and unmasking via the NSA’s Counter Intelligence data-base including conspiracy to entrap by a small group, including McCabe as an integral puppet master, at the top echelons of the FBI and DoJ.

    It could be that Barr doesn’t want to let a couple of comparatively light weight crimes get in the way of the more serious investigation(s) being undertaken or alternatively, in a town like Washington were seemly everybody works one way or another for the Gov’t, whether Barr could actually get a Grand Jury to indict one of their own so to speak.

    Interesting reading.

  10. littledozer

    Judge Jackson has really left herself open with this issue around the fore person(who is a lawyer and partisan)

    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1227952864074620928.html

  11. Bruce of Newcastle

    Trump is Barr’s boss.
    Nothing else needs to be said.

  12. littledozer

    maybe not a lawyer though

  13. littledozer

    Another Stone juror was an “Obama-era press official with admitted anti-Trump views,” and yet another had donated to Democrat Beto O’Rourke and other liberal causes, according to Fox.

  14. FelixKruell

    Tim:

    Why the flying duck should he?

    Because that’s what conservatives do…

    Besides, he’s apparently drained the swamp. What’s there left for him to fear?

  15. Tom

    In this context, having a Tweeting President on overwatch is not necessarily a bad thing.

    If Trump had not decided to use Twitter to circumvent the Deep State media, there would have been no draining of the swamp.

    “Conservatives” who don’t like Trump’s methods are those who don’t want the swamp drained because of the embarrassment Trump is causing the swamp.

  16. Bill Thompson

    Deep state plots against Trump get clearer… news from 2018 now seems even more outrageous! – James Wolfe was the DIRECTOR OF SECURITY for the SENATE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE (NO LESS!) & he leaked Carter Page-related intel to reporters ON THE DAY it arrived! AND THEN HE LIED TO THE FBI ABOUT IT… and only got 2 months jail! Roger Stone should have been so lucky…
    https://www.baltimoresun.com/maryland/howard/bs-md-ex-senate-staffer-from-ellicott-city-sentenced-for-lying-to-fbi-1221-story.html

  17. BorisG

    I see little evidence that Barr is doing anything other than protecting the filth in the FBI and Justice.

    Then why did trump appoint him and repeatedly expressed confidence in him? Maybe he knows better ?

    Barr is a staunch Trump loyalist who knows what trump wants for every criminal case without any tweets.

  18. BorisG

    Another Stone juror was an “Obama-era press official with admitted anti-Trump views,” and yet another had donated to Democrat Beto O’Rourke and other liberal causes, according to Fox.

    Are all jurors expected not to have a political opinion?

  19. BorisG

    Stone is an idiot. To threaten to kill a witness (or his dog) in writing is such a stupid action. He should pay a steep price.

  20. BorisG

    Since Watergate it has been an established practice for DOJ to act independently of the President. You don’t want DOJ to become a president tool. but it is clearly heading that way under Trump. Hope Trump will be on the receiving end of this once he steps down. He may stuff the Supreme Court with arch-conservatives but he has no control over the next cabinet.

    Be nice to people on your way up because you will meet them on your way down.

  21. C.L.

    Stone is an idiot. To threaten to kill a witness (or his dog) in writing is such a stupid action. He should pay a steep price.

    Baloney, Boris. The witness, Randy Credico (a New York comedian), informed the judge in writing that he didn’t take the threat seriously. It was a joke. He also told Judge Amy Jackson that he was strongly against any term of imprisonment for Stone.

  22. C.L.

    You don’t want DOJ to become a presidential tool.

    It is a tool of the Democrat Party, that’s the problem.

  23. mh

    Stone is an idiot. To threaten to kill a witness (or his dog) in writing is such a stupid action. He should pay a steep price.

    Stone told his one-time friend Randy Credico he would “take that dog away from you”.

    You think that deserves 9 years in jail, Boris?

  24. BorisG

    The witness, Randy Credico (a New York comedian), informed the judge in writing that he didn’t take the threat seriously.

    I know. Still an idiot.

  25. BorisG

    In any case, it is a storm in a teacup. The decision is up to a judge. it is not uncommon for prosecutors’ recommendations to be slashed very substantially.

  26. BorisG

    It is a tool of the Democrat Party, that’s the problem.

    I knew you will say that. But institutions, as imperfect as they are, are vital to a functioning democracy.

    Example: FBI has established that Russian intelligence interfered with the 2016 elections. This was later confirmed by a congressional committee (don’t remember which one). Yet Trump has denied this based on what Putin told him.

    Are we to think this was all made up to embarrass Trump? I don’t think so.

  27. Ben

    Just have to say: loving the verbose, and the cartoons.

  28. Richard Stacpoole

    Then why did trump appoint him and repeatedly expressed confidence in him? Maybe he knows better?

    Trump has made many terrible appointments, Masters, Prebius, Tillerson, Mattis, Kelly and Sessions to name a few high level ones. They were either anti-trumpers who wanted to foil him or were hoodwinked by their officials into recusing themselves. Barr is on the terrible list until he actually appears to do something well:
    The Flynn case is still going,
    The Stone case is a massive farce,
    The 60 day deal for FISA case leaker and liar Wolfe,
    Supporting Jessica Liu’s nomination,
    Not sacking all lawyers involved in the Mueller coup.

    None of these matters has been explained satisfactorily, no prosecutions, no indictments. I don’t think Barr is a straight shooter, he’s protecting the institutions and blocking the drain.

  29. Crossie

    If the President takes over too often, however, his A-G will be sidelined. He’ll end up losing a good man.

    A good man? What has he done so far? The guilty as hell Democrats apparatchiks who infested all the agencies and departments are skating while Trump’s friends are persecuted and rotting in jail. It’s always “big indictments are coming” and then nothing. Barr must have been able to bamboozle Trump with his bagpipe playing skills rather than his accomplishments.

  30. Crossie

    Should have said in the previous comment: rather than his legal accomplishments.

  31. littledozer

    In any case, it is a storm in a teacup. The decision is up to a judge. it is not uncommon for prosecutors’ recommendations to be slashed very substantially.

    Well clearly you know nothing about this judge. Pretty sure that there are around 670 District court judges but this judge presided over both the Manforte and Stone cases. Some coincidence. plus another from the Meuller investigation of Alex Van der Zwaan

    Judge Jackson also presided over a lawsuit, FreedomWatch in November 2017 sued to force the Justice Department to investigate leaks coming from the special counsel and alleged conflicts of interest among staff, arguing that Mueller should be removed from the case.

    FreedomWatch is arguing for the dismissal of the judge presiding over its lawsuit seeking the removal of Robert Mueller from the special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the presidential election, citing the judge’s political bias toward Democrats.

    4 cases connected to Meuller investigation, what are the odds?

  32. a happy little debunker

    Department of Justice & it’s Prosecutors are a part of the Executive, which answers to Trump – not the other way round. The Judiciary is not part of the DOJ.

    It is clear that at least one juror (the foreperson) lied during Voir Dire, which should have the Judge declaring a mistrial and ordering that juror be arrested for perjury.
    The decision not to call a mistrial or charge the juror means that whatever sentence imposed will be inherently unsound and subject challenge on appeal to a higher court.

    Much has been made of Trump’s criticism of the Judiciary (as interference), whilst Congress Representative’s themselves criticize the Head of the Judiciary (Supreme Court Justice Roberts) for not responding to Trump.

  33. Tel

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Article_Two_of_the_United_States_Constitution

    The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

    Seems to me that when Trump gets on Twitter and starts asking what’s the story with this Stone trial, that would be because he “may require the Opinion” of the Attorney General, who is a head of an executive Department. Might not be the most elegant way to do it, but the US Constitution does not discuss the style of the President, only the office and function of the President.

    What’s more the President is not allowed to ignore a clearly visible travesty of justice, he must “take care that the laws be faithfully executed” and that’s not optional, it’s absolutely a duty of the POTUS.

  34. BorisG

    Trump has made many terrible appointments, Masters, Prebius, Tillerson, Mattis, Kelly and Sessions to name a few high level ones

    Maybe Trump is simply one of them? Or we have to believe that the Tsar is a saint and all the bad things are caused by his cronies?

  35. Zatara

    It’s interesting that the DoJ dropped pursuing McCabe on the leaking of classified info and lying to FBI prosecutors which McCabe is obviously delighted about.

    It is possible that McCabe has turned State’s evidence in exchange for the dropped charges. Or, that they didn’t have a strong enough case on those, but there are more to come and they didn’t want to dilute their impact.

    I think I’d wait a bit longer before throwing too many rocks at Barr. On the other hand, it’s true that he’d see less Trump tweets about DoJ performance if someone FINALLY went to jail for the egregious acts of the left over the last decade, or even to trial.

  36. bobby b

    “Since Watergate it has been an established practice for DOJ to act independently of the President. “

    Which, of course, is why DOJ has gone after next to no Democrats for anything since then, correct?

    What crap. DOJ is a captive agency of one party. Trump is attempting – against a very strong current – to bring it back a bit the other way.

    “Are all jurors expected not to have a political opinion?”

    Of course not. “Liberalism is ok.” “People should not starve.” “Racism is bad.”

    But not “we must do everything possible to bring down this orange-haired man.” Not “he worked for Trump so he’s evil.” Not “this judge is clearly on our side so I can fudge all of my voir dire responses.”

    “Barr is a staunch Trump loyalist who knows what trump wants for every criminal case without any tweets.”

    You say that with a sneer, ignoring two points: first, Barr is very much his own man, and, second, Barr is the appointed head of an executive agency, so even though he thinks independently, it is his job to carry out the Executive’s philosophies.

    “Stone is an idiot. To threaten to kill a witness (or his dog) in writing is such a stupid action. He should pay a steep price.”

    A price higher than is paid by people who actually do something bad? As a hit job aimed at shutting up people working for the President? I think not.

    You’re quite the dishonest little weasel, aren’t you?

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